Knit One, Pearl Two

P: Elsie (self-thread)

POSTED: Sun May 04, 2014 10:36 pm

The quiet clicking of knitting needles and a crackling fire filled the air as Esther and Elsie spent the evening in rocking chairs before the fireplace. Most of the cats were grouped on the floor in front of them to enjoy the extra heat from the flames. Although it was warming up outside, it seemed the cats would never pass up some extra heat, be it from a sunbeam or the fire. Esther felt the same way; night chills tended to affect her more than they used to, so even now, she appreciated the fire Elsie had built for her. It warmed her joints and made her knitting more fluid.

Esther mostly allowed her mind to wander, thinking about what she might have been able to trade the shawl she was making for. It was a loose stitch, made from blue yarn. She thought it would be pretty when it was done, and would be nice for when summer nights got a little chilly. Perhaps she could have gotten some good-condition fabric from it. Thinking of trade had her wondering about Elsie’s travels. They had talked a little bit about her trips so far, and Esther was looking ahead as well. Perhaps Elsie would also be interested in taking some of her things to trade and they could get some items the pack needed in return. The Elder decided she would suggest that soon.

"So where do you think you will be off to next?" Esther asked, breaking the relative silence. She was always interested in her great-niece's travels, living vicariously through her while wishing she could go as well. The Elder was not sure how that would work so she had not asked about it. Instead, she decided it was better to know where she would be off to, so that she could judge if the things she made would be useful there.
Esther Hennamin

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POSTED: Sun May 18, 2014 9:33 am

Just sitting by the fireplace knitting with her great-aunt was quickly becoming one of Elsie’s favorite things to do. For once, she did not always feel the need to chatter away; she could get lost in the rhythm of the needles clicking together and simply let her mind wander to other things. She thought about planning her next trips, perhaps seeing if anyone in the pack wanted to go with her sometime since she doubted she was the only one who liked to trade. She also thought about trying to teach others to trade; she did not want them to be inexperienced and get ripped off. Just because she always gave fair prices did not mean others would do the same. There were several times when she was learning to trade that her father had stepped in to stop her from going through with a bad deal.

Elsie looked up as Esther asked her a question and paused for a moment before continuing to knit. Esther’s needles didn’t stop, and Elsie hoped to someday be that good that she could continue to concentrate no matter what.

“Well, I’m not really sure right now. I need to find out more about the packs nearby. The two I went to were quite humanized, so that made it very easy to trade. The rest, though, I have not heard much about. There’s one called Ani’Waya, right?” Elsie paused her knitting again to look up in time to see Esther nod. “What’s that one like?”

“Well, they are quite humanized as well. One came here and I taught him to weave,” Esther said, as her needles continued to click.

“Oh, well maybe I should go there!” Esie said with a grin. “Do we get along with them?” Of course, being on unfriendly terms would change things. That didn’t seem like the case, so perhaps she would set up a trip to see them next.
Elsie Hennamin

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POSTED: Sun May 18, 2014 9:52 am

“Yes,” Esther nodded. “Our packs are rather close, as far as I know.” She looked over at Whitey as he turned from his stomach to his back so that the fire could warm his stomach. His paws curled and uncurled as he kneaded the air and he blinked his eyes at her before dozing off again. Cuddled up next to him was his mother who looked displeased as he moved but then settled in again after he did.

“They used to be south of here. I believe they have moved, though. You will have to ask around to see where they have gone to.” Esther just knew that they were to the northwest, but other than that, she would not be able to give any specific directions. If only she was able to do some traveling, then she would be able to tell others where to go to get to the packs they wanted to, or even better be able to tell them which packs might have what they needed to trade for.

“Okay, thanks!” Elsie chirped and Esther heard her knitting needles start up again.

“How have your trades been going, then?” Esther asked, looking back down at her work.

“Oh, it’s been awesome!” Elsie gushed. “I mean, seeing Lola and Faolan again was great, but also just meeting new canines to trade with.” Esther nodded and her hands did not miss a beat on the lightweight shawl she was making.

“That sounds very nice,” Esther said and could not quite keep the wistful tone from her voice. Elsie stopped knitting again. “Do you think you might go back?” Building up the relationships between the packs was never a bad thing in Esther’s opinion, although she never really got involved in any of the politics between them. She figured that was better left to the youth. Still, it brought back the longing to be able to travel.
Esther Hennamin

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POSTED: Sun May 18, 2014 10:23 am

For a moment, Elsie had been read to spill all the details about her recent trips, especially being able to see Lola again, and about Abigail, whom she thought Esther may have liked as well. However, the tone in her great-aunt’s voice made her pause and look up again. The Elder’s tone had seemed almost longing and then Elsie blinked. Of course. Esther was pretty much stuck in Cercatori d’Arte, and while Elsie had quickly discovered that it was a lovely place to live, their family traveled. Being cooped up in one place all the time was something Elsie could not imagine.

“Auntie, would you like to come with me?” Elsie asked, and finally Esther paused her knitting to look up. For a moment, Elsie wondered if she had come to the wrong conclusion, especially when Esther did not answer her right away, and simply blinked at her instead.

“Well turnip, I would like that,” Esther replied with a nod. “I just do not know how it would work.”

“Why not?” Elsie asked; she saw no reason Esther couldn’t come with her, except maybe that it was a long walk. That, she supposed, could pose a large problem. Elsie didn’t want to push Esther too hard, but she also did not want her great-aunt to be limited by her age, especially when there were some packs so close by. It was not like before when they would travel days and days to get to the next pack.

“I don’t think I could walk that far,” Esther said, confirming Elsie’s thoughts.

“What if you rode in the cart Carl pulls?” Elsie suggested They’d still go slow, but Carl’s pace was never very fast anyway, and Elsie never hurried him along. She didn’t want the cart to overturn on the rough ground and get him hurt.
Elsie Hennamin

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POSTED: Mon May 19, 2014 8:32 pm

Walking to one of the other packs was certainly out of the question, but riding along might be doable. Carl seemed to be a relatively calm animal, but then again, when compared to his owner, he was downright tame. Esther did not think she would have a problem riding in his cart. Of course, she would want to bring one or two of the cats with them, and they could even ride along when they grew too tired to walk, but then something else struck her.

"But how much can he pull?" Esther had seen the cart loaded with a fair amount of fabric, some leather, beads, and the like, but Elsie did not ride in the cart with everything. Esther had only seen her great-niece leading Carl the llama along. A frown formed on Elsie's face as she considered the question.

"Well... Probably not much more than you," she sighed, then visibly perked up a little bit to suggest, "But it could just be a short trading trip!" Esther looked down at her knitting, counting the stitches in the current row so that she could start again while thinking about the newest idea. She did not want to limit her great-niece. It was why she had not simply asked to go with her already.

"I don't know, turnip. It would mean less to trade. That would not be good." The Elder's needles clicked together as she tried to come up with another way it could work. "I do not know how to drive a wagon with two horses. Do you?" She asked. The caravan was so large, especially if just the two of them were going. Maybe if they invited more packmates along on the trip, it would be okay, but that was not what they were looking to do all the time.
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